MELBOURNE WOMEN IN FILM FESTIVAL 2018 NEW website review by Dina Gavrilova
The Melbourne Women in Film Festival
The next wave of feminism crashed on the shores of Australia and called into existence gender equality issue. it is not a new one in general but it took a fresh turn into the film industry. In the era of global #Metoo movement it seems an honorable initiative to spread it on the local level. And second time already The Melbourne Women in Film Festival gives everyone an opportunity to support and celebrate female filmmakers and creatives. This gives the festival a lot of credit but the implied message it actually sends out is a bit controversial. Fighting for the rights is never easy, therefore the more important to do this wisely. To start from Lili Brik whose portrait made by Rodchenko embellishes the banner for 2018. She was well known mostly for her love affairs and ‘being a muse of Russian avant-garde’ rather than being a creative herself. Moreover, standing for gender equality the crew of the festival has not a single man on board. Is that true equality? The choice of movies is arguable as well. It is fair enough and praiseworthy to promote female filmmakers but not at the expense of quality. Unfortunately, when gender becomes the only criteria the result is not hard to predict…
LOVE SERENADE NEW OPENING NIGHT website ‘Love Serenade’, the movie picked for the opening night, also raises a few questions. According to the official poster, the tagline states ‘two sisters will do anything to hook the right man’. It seems to be not quite encouraging and empowering message for women nowadays, does it? Released in 1996 ’Love serenade’ tells the story of two sisters who compete with each other for man’s attention and kill him at the end. Do not mentioning real incident on the set, violent solution for the trivial issue doesn’t look like moral and ethic response. Perhaps, back in 1996 this movie was witty enough and matched the attitude but does it really fit the agenda now? So, ladies, fighting for our rights lets do not forget about the common sense! Otherwise, we have all the chances to fail…
THE SILENCES NEW website ’Silences’ was another movie on the program. And that one was definitely fitting the bill. It is a documentary narrating a family life story throughout half of the century, how bizarre twists of fate shape our lives. Margot Nash digs deep into her family roots in order to understand herself and examines this issue from a few angles including historical and psychological. How such significant occasion as war affected her personally? Unfortunately, not very often we think of indirect consequences of military conflicts though they have substantial impact through generations causing or triggering mental illnesses and giving plenty of grief even decades later. Another aspect is psychological: what are those coping mechanisms which allow people to handle unbearable loss and what it actually takes. All this contemplates through the lenses of personal relationship between the author and her mother. Private stories and secrets alternate with photos and videos revealing the truth which almost every family keeps (to a certain extend) but rare one has courage to admit.
All in all, it is extremely encouraging to know there are so many passionate women in film industry. Although certain improvements required, the efforts are appreciated. So, the very best wish for the next year is to keep going despite everything!
Finding Your Feet film shines with the cast which is so theatrical you will adore the actors and their acting. I did not have very high expectations attending this film but it showed the opposite. Watched it in one breath, however some of the parts seemed a bit too sweet and unrealistic to me but the film is very positive and will set your mood in the right pace. he film will be though more suitable for the people of older age as it reflects their challenges and targets some particular aspects of life that relate to this kind of audience. It is about responsibilities in life, it is about love and romance, it is about caring for each other and t is about trust. I also thought: man who has the clear and pure intentions about the woman will not hesitate and will never question: to be or not to be. He knows his truth and he knows that he will be the winner as he has nothing to hide. The message for the women: letting go sometimes is the right and the only way to live. One more: forgive the right people, never to forgive the ones who can do the same wrong deed to you again - you know this kind. The film is full of good and healthy humor and life strength. It will encourage and will inspire. and as I mentioned earlier: BEST CAST EVER! You will enjoy the film.
It is a documentary about human rights, it is shocking, it is cynical due to the material used in making it, it is made by Ai Weiwei, the artist and the dissident .
We all have our view on the new comers and immigrants: be that very low grade opinions or just common opinions, lets be honest: no matter what we are told we all have our opinion on these people. Ai Weiwei did not make it colorful - he simply showed the real dramatic and sometimes devastating picture. His images, I mean hid footage can not be called human sometimes although it is blended with the nice and high end poetry, it is artistic but destroying. We have laws, we have rules to pay on, we have Organasations Of United Nations but the reality is much much much sadder than we all think. We only see what we are shown on TV and media , we know nothing. The humans are treated worse than animals . The animals have more organisations to protect their rights than human beings. Humans might not see the grass for years, the animal will suffocate and die if his/her feet do not touch the ground for a couple of months. While I have been curious and a bit disgusted seeing this documentary the rest of the film was turning into a boring and quite repetitive pace. Was I ashamed of the luxury I live in? Of the country that I live in? Was I ashamed of the ignorance that I live in? Was I ashamed of the complains my friends have on life while their brothers and sisters stay in such conditions? Did Ai solve anything for me or for the people in my country? No, he did not. Will we act? not really. Everything will remain the same because we are rich and we do not want to share or to equialise our selves. One thought was just striking tough: why Mr Weiwei was filming such movie? Would not it be better for him to give the money he spent on travelling and filming to the people he made this documentary on. Is not it some kind of a paradox? The problem of poor/rich next door / wall divided neighbours is spread all over the world, nothing has changed - the immigration happened 200,000 years ago, it happens now, it will always be the case. WE only know now more because of the media and information sharing on social sites. But we all continue on with our lives. We do not care Weiwei, we do not care about your film! Ai traveled through 23 countries of the wold, he spent so much efforts, so much money on that trip to show to us, ignorant potato, leather and cotton wear consumers of the world what is wrong with it. Weiwei covered Syria, Bangladesh, Mexico, Mali, the scale seems devastating. They live next to us., the deprived and the hungry while you eat scrambled eggs and chickens. The dramas get more interesting the vaster their scale is, the deeper their crisis is. Ai's statistic on the screen makes you sick. You will not believe you went to have coffee last night and did not think even that your brother did not have warm blanket last night. Ai Weiwei forgets one thing: again - we do not care, he uses the quality material on the grand scale , we care about teeth brushing. Ai plays with the human destinies as he plays with his art material, the art seems only a material to him, right? What is the difference between his documentary and the everyday news that show pain to us so carelessly we became immune to it...Two and half hours I was in pain. I gave the film 8/10 for his artistism and should be given 0 for the problem tackling. Because this is the main art purpose: to solve and to ease, to beautify and to make us better... I did not feel better ... I felt worse. I did not know how to help these hungry kids' mother and fathers. Ai lost one thing in his life: he is not a classical artist, he has not told me anything new - I know the pain, he did not heal, he laughed at me. His art is helpless... so I felt the same. He disturbed us, the people enjoying the fruit of our capitalistic tables, but he never showed the way out it. We will then remain sitting at our tables and laughing. I only have one very bad suspicion: Ai;s purpose was not to show us the problem but rather to show HIMSELF as a genius rtist. This is where he failed. He ran after that GRAND himself but he found only emptiness of boat of disembarked immigrants, cold and scared to death after their journeys. WOULD HE HAVE THE GUTS TO INVITE HIS "ACTORS: TO THE RED CARPET IN CANNES THOUGH???
YOU HAVE TO SEE IT! It is a video version of the newly opened Bridge Theatre production in London called Young Marx. Rory Kinnear rocks in his acting and he would be the best Marx's impersonation I have ever seen on stage! I am in love with Karl Marx! I would not imagine myself saying it anywhere before! Rony is handsome, Rony is OMG!!!!! I am crazy about him and his talent! If I say the production was spectacular I would say nothing to you, my dear readers. I was laughing out loud scaring the people ll over the theater full of serious media, smiling media. But I WAS loud. Marx is shown in all his true colors, as a human being not as a communistic idol of a all centuries and all working people. Marz is a thief, he is a total dumbwit, kind and sarcastic crazy idiot running away from the police on roof ops, unfaithful to his wife, crying at his son's grave, having fun with his made-lover and tricking the pawn shop owners. He drinks, he smokes and he is not right in his head of course as all geniuses are. It is a black comedy of high class. One scene wil never get out of my mind: Marx meeting with Charles Darvin. Now you know who gave whose ideas to whom, but my laughter would not feel complete without this particular scene. Dear Nicholas Hytner, I swar I will not miss any of your productions from now on! Capital! Marz says THANK YOU to the man next to him: Engels, he says THANK YOU to his wife and THANK YOU o his lover - without those three people the book would never see the light , would never be published. It is about women's care and tolerance , men's friendship, finding your own way in life, struggle and hardship, egoism and self-giving to the other person. I want to dd to my story that the decorations are superb, the production is amazing: it shows not only poitical but family and social life of the young star. Musical intermissions of Marx and Engels are the top of the cherry on the production cake. This miracle is a simple window to the common life of any person whom we though was so unreachable and who is reality is the same as us. Engels. He is rational and smart in spite of Marx's volcanic character: he balances the family scenes and the overall mood of the staging. Engels is one who always find the solution in the most difficult situation in family: be is love-romance or just a financial difficulty. Engels is charming. Marx is egocentric to the most. There no people, no sols, no feelings around him except his own, He is always so keen to do something for his family and friends but he never does it. He knows the book title but he has not written a word in his book for the last 5 years. his Miss Laziness can write a poems about Marx if she could ever have the energy to write. But she is laziness, she would rather be infidel, lazy, drink and eat and smoke. There is no job tat She would do. Marx is smart and he is smart enough not to work at all. Marx doe snot have a light nor he knows how to use his torch in the darkness that he put himself into. He looks funny but you want to cry as you yourself in such scenes. WHAT I LOVED THE MOST: humor of course. It is balanced, it is in most cases intelligent and it is always there in the right place. It never ends. Who would ever think Marx was young, stupid and wind-headed? We did not think about it. I am glad there are people who think different from everyone's else.
The message was so well delivered in this film: women have no word and some still do not have any to say o men. It is very hard to imagine that they were fighting for their rights in such country as Switzerland for the rights in 1970 when you are sure the rights should have been all resolved in the best possible way to everyone. It is hard to imagine such a cave-man order but it was true. Nora , the main character can not work outside her house hold, she can not have her own opinion, she has to cook every single meal for her family, all she sees in life is cooking, cleaning and washing. She does not know any better. Her life is about to change. The revelation only needs a small seed to grow inside the good soil. Nora is played by Leuenberger, a highly talented actor. It was one of not many films where the characters were not based on real people. I can see some of the people might find the film a bit slow and boring but I liked some of its parts.
TRANSITIONS FILM FESTIVAL 2018: FOOD FIGHTER NEW website review by Jeanette Russel
I appreciate the opportunity to view the Food Fighter documentary, very much. This film gave an amazing and somewhat shocking insight into food waste in Australia. Ronni Kahn who founded OzHarvest has taken the fight globally about how as human's we waste so much food. In Australia alone, at the start of the documentary being filmed in 2015, we had a 20 billion dollar, food waste bill , per annum. While each year two million Australians suffer from insecurity around food, an essential human need, for survial. The impact on the environment is also huge. Discarded edible food going to land fill causes greenhouse gas emissions. This was all significant "food for thought " for me. Ronni's Oz Harvest first formed in Sydney in 2004, was started, to collect some wasted food. Supermarkets, Qantas airlines etc were just some big businesses where perfectly edible food was collected to take in vans to hungry Aussie's in need. She has founded a phenomenal agency which now helps, educates, and supports people all over Australia. we learn in the film that this dynamic women is taking her harvest approach to the world. Strong focused and passionate about food harvesting Ronni has taken her plight to four continents. As the documentary shows she has not given up in any quarter even though there has been challenges and resistance. Ronni has remained firm and determined to fight for her food cause. Her crusade has brought many bright and innovative ideas to the fore about how we can locally and globally combat, food waste, and environmental impact, as well as contributing to food sustainability, use and health. I would really recommend seeing this documentary. Contained are great eyeopening , moving and very informative . content. I highly recommend seeing this film. It runs at the Transitions Film Festival:
Sydney Newtown Dendy Friday, March 23 @ 6:30 pm Brisbane New Farm Cinemas Thursday, March 22 @ 6:30 pm
Starring: Chris Hemsworth Michael Shannon Michael Peña Navid Negahban Trevante Rhodes Geoff Stults Thad Luckinbill Austin Stowell Ben O’Toole Austin Hebert Kenneth Miller Kenny Sheard Jack Kesy.
Genre: Action Adventure Drama Historical.
Running time: 130 Minutes. Concise Critique: 12 Strong By Maxwell M. Lyons
America, 9/11, terrorism, Afghanistan; here we go again. The latest in American jingoism, 12 Strong, is based on the now-declassified military operation involving the first U.S. soldiers to land in (*cough* invade) Afghanistan post-9/11. Led by captain Mitch Nelson (Chris Hemsworth), this twelve-man Special Forces unit was ordered to rendezvous with local warlord Abdul Rashid Dostum (Navid Negahban) and launch a retaliatory attack – all while on horseback – to cripple the Taliban’s nexus of power and pre-emptively hinder Al Qaeda’s faculty for further terroristic training. And so began the War-On-Terror.
The performances of and chemistry between Hemsworth and Negahban alone were highly commendable, and it is this dynamic that carries much of the movie and acts as a surprisingly emotionally-charged subplot. Outside this duo, noteworthy performances were those of U.S. allies played by Michael Shannon (a loyal lieutenant) and Michael Peña (the comedic relief). Unfortunately, the remaining nine compatriots were underdeveloped and offered little more than gratuitous masculine bravado and throwaway movie-tagline dialogue. And let’s not forget the waves of faceless Taliban soldiers and their stereotypical cold-hearted religious extremist of a leader – you’d be hard pressed finding a more contrived antagonist.
Aside from poorly-written characters, the film’s main problem stems from its overly cliché conventions and enamour with patriotic heroism. There are the tearful (horrendously underwritten) soldier’s wives and their melodramatic goodbyes, the cold-but-progressively-warmer foreign relations, the overcoming of differences for the greater good, the eye-for-an-eye mentality, and of course the necessity for the hero to prove themselves in some way – you’ve seen it all before. The film somehow even makes its action scenes feel repetitive and lacklustre after a while, becoming little beyond a spectacle of smart bombs dropping from B-52s in the stratosphere. The gunfire, explosions, and tactical warfare still rear their heads every so often, but at 130 minutes the film drags on somewhat and stunts in pacing.
At its core, 12 Strong appears to have the best of intentions in telling the amazing story of these twelve men. It was fairly entertaining at times and had some admirable performances, but was unfortunately hindered by its melodramatic cliché, subpar dialogue, and one-dimensional stolidity. If you like war movies and don’t mind a bit of narrative simplicity, you may find 12 Strong a decent way to kill an afternoon. But if – like myself – you’re blasé with the ego-stroke of American patriotism, you won’t get much from this one. Whichever you choose, I must say that the irony of casting an Australian as lead actor to the most American thing to America its way out of America in quite some time should not be lost on anyone.
12 Strong will be released in cinemas Australia-wide on March 8, 2018.
KANGAROO A LOVE HATE STORY NEW website RATE: 9/10
The film is heart breaking, describing the devastating state the national animal of Australia and its iconic symbol being treated as a commodity , bringing money to the state and the government as well as to the organisations and individuals connected to hunting the innocent creature down with cruelty and heartless acts. The films reveals a not so pleasant truth we all do not like to hear. The kangaroo meat is imported without a second though about damaging the environment but not only that as that would be the least of all evil: the way the animal is killed is not unbearable to watch. We do not kill our cows and pigs that disrespectful way. The land belongs to all of us equally. The land does not belong to the ones who have sharper knives, precise weapons and war craft gold. I was so revolted I still can not eat meat after watching this film. The film not only reveals the problem but it also offers the solution. Please watch it as the knowledge is power and such films in particular can tell you a lot about who lives next to us and what we all should sat up on and what we all shoild support.
MARY MAGDALENE NEW website review by Susan Reynolds
Mary Magdalene 2018 Review by Susan Reynolds
Director: Garth Evans (Lion 2016) Jesus of Nazareth: Joaquin Phoenix Mary Magdalene: Mara Rooney Judas Iscariot: Tahar Rahim Her brother Daniel: Denis Ménochet Peter: Chiwetel Ejiofor Rachel: Ariana Labed Writers: Helen Edmundson and Philippa Goslett Film Score: Icelandic composer Johann Johannsson
The Costume Design and the Art Department team deserve credit for making this film look stunningly authentic. The plentiful robes, some with beautiful embroidery, artistically swathe the bodies and often move gracefully in the coastal breeze. The superb cinematography recording the everyday life and events of these ancient peoples set amongst the rustic backdrop of Judaean villages.
The group of Apostles led by Jesus progresses through the countryside. The culmination of their journey is Jerusalem, where the story unfolds. All the while we are treated to atmospheric vistas like what one would imagine the ancient world to be. It’s filmed in Italy notably Sicily and Puglia which are grand locations for the movie.
Mary, a young Jewish woman from a fishing village in the 1st Century had wanted to escape the constraints of her expected role as a compliant daughter in a society with a patriarchal order. She was disobedient in rejecting a suitor chosen by her father and engaged in overtly fervent prayer. The latter a practice frowned upon outside the expectations of her gender. As a result of her actions she was seen as a being possessed. She was violently submerged in the sea within seconds of her life by her own family. She flees to follow Jesus and become an Apostle.
Many people are joining now; they’re embracing this new faith and following this charismatic Rabbi Jesus. They are eager to experience the douse of faith in the numerous Sea of Galilee baptisms. At times Jesus greets the crowds with his preaching but baptisms are a highlight and his disciples assist, including the newly enlightened Mary.
Enthusiasm for the new kingdom spoken about by Jesus is apparent amongst the Apostles but overwhelmingly so with Judas Iscariot. A great performance by Tahar Rahmin as Judas whose feverishness about deliverance from Roman oppression and the new kingdom is further fuelled when he witnesses Jesus in action with his miracles.
These healings Jesus undertakes impress everyone not unexpectedly as he manages in one instance to bring a dead man back to life. Mary and the others have their faith legitimized by seeing this. It’s also clear to Mother Mary that Mary Magdalene not only admires her son but she loves him and she states this to her. The chemistry between Jesus and Mary Magdalene is believable. Mary is driven not just by devotion to Jesus but also the bigger picture. In the later scenes she proves this when she stands defiant that she will spread the word when in the presence of Peter after Jesus death. Peter tries to suppress Mary and chastise her for her involvement with Jesus. But she is having none of it; she leaves after proclaiming that she will commit to the cause.
Most people know the essence of the story and it’s there predictably: the crucifixion, the cave and the resurrection. Further revelation about the character of Judas is his completely euphoric anticipation of what Jesus will do. Judas decides to put Jesus to a disastrous test betraying him to Romans uttering Jesus will have to act now in the face of adversity. Seemingly not out of malice but more out of impatience. There is a hugely regretful Judas after the consequences of his actions are realized. Judas character in the film is an interesting depiction and not a single dimension villain.
In the beginning and end of the film Mary is in the watery depths suspended and it is really beautiful. Just like she is in the heavens as we see historically in robed figures defying gravity in Renaissance paintings such as Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel. The Biblical significance of these narrations talks of the nurtured seed being fruitful and abundant. This is from the parable the Book of Matthew where it’s written the growth of Christ’s kingdom as if from a single seed of mustard.
Joaquin Phoenix as Jesus takes command of the role and has an unconventional demeanor to the point of being almost a bit quirky. He makes the role his own; it’s definitely not a cookie cutter portrayal. His hair is disheveled and his robes are shabby; this emphasizes the fact that he is more interested in others than himself.
Beautiful, fresh faced, palely angelic at times; Rooney Mara conveys Mary’s deft abilities at healing and counseling; her kindness and leadership. Mary is truly a multi-faceted heroine who does her gender proud. Her sense of compassion is the jewel in her crown... no more poignantly than when she deals with the villagers who were left to perish and were near to death if not already dead in the caves scene.
The outcome is an interesting portrayal of Mary’s role in history; she’s no longer viewed as a prostitute. A woman whose status once warped by society and proliferated by Pope Gregory I in 591 and often as far back as the 4th century. 2016 saw change in Church doctrines recognizing Mary Magdalene’s important place in history and redeeming her effectively. The proposals as to what her actual character may have been are well considered in this film.
Running time: 106 Minutes. Concise Critique: In the Fade (Aus dem Nichts) By Maxwell M. Lyons
Directed by Fatih Akin and winner of the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film 2017, In the Fade is a strikingly humanistic story of grief, desolation, and reprisal at the hands of injustice. Divided into three distinct (and intertitled) acts the movie follows Katja (Diane Kruger) and her psychological struggle through the ensuing events following the death of her ex-con husband Nuri (Numan Açar) and young son Rocco at the hands of a terroristic bombing.
As a whole, the movie is an entertaining watch with compelling performances, tight and highly focussed cinematography, and a felicitous discordant sound design fitting of the gritty neo-noir it presents itself to be. Unfortunately, there are some tonal issues between the three acts – the second act in particular drags somewhat before tensions are reignited leading into the climactic thriller-esk third act, though by this stage it loses some traction and never quite reaches that level of suspense you’d hope for.
Furthermore, there was little intricacy to the narrative. The film seemed far too enamoured in depicting the profundity of Katja’s grief that it lacked depth outside her solipsism. For instance, Nuri’s criminal history served little but to facilitate exposition in the form of a police interrogation that itself lead nowhere. Furthermore, the young villainous duo are shallow and underdeveloped characters, all but mere blank canvases with the word ‘evil’ scrawled across them – their malevolence is autotelic. Likewise, Katja’s friends and family are generic and one-dimensional, acting only to fuel Katja’s despair and add verisimilitude to her impetuous desolation before being ousted from the story. The film really wants you to believe that there is no alternative for Katja, but it offered little opportunity otherwise, and so the narrative felt forced and vacuous.
In the Fade is definitely a movie worth seeking out (if you can handle subtitles), though I would caution having ‘Golden Globe’ level expectations. There are many praiseworthy aspects, especially in Kruger’s performance as the unwavering and monosyllabic Katja, but its claustrophobic scope, narrative otiosity, and tonal inconsistency hampers what is an otherwise enjoyable watch.
In the Fade will be released in cinemas Australia-wide on March 8, 2018.
EVERY DAY NEW website review by Susan Reynolds THE FILM WAS CANCELLED BY THE PRODUCERS
Film Review: Oscar Nominated Live-Action Short-Films By Maxwell M. Lyons
The Academy Awards are right around the corner, and critics the world over are vociferously touting their winning-predictions. From ‘Best Picture’ to ‘Best Actor/Actress’, there are a flurry of beautifully crafted marvels, impeccable performances, and commendable behind-the-scenes roles worthy of reverence. Though often overlooked is the category of short-films, which is a crying shame given the remarkable feats of cinematic craftsmanship of this year’s nominees for Best Live Action Short-Film – ‘DeKalb Elementary’, ‘My Nephew Emmett’, ‘Watu Wote/All of Us’, ‘The Eleven O’Clock’, and ‘The Silent Child’.
DeKalb Elementary is a retelling of a 2013 school shooting in Atlanta, Georgia. Deriving much of its dialogue and inspiration from the actual transcript of the 911 call made during the event, the short tells the story of a young gunman armed with an automatic rifle and his encounter with a surprisingly compassionate administrator. As a whole, the short was quite well made, but unfortunately lacked anything overly noteworthy. The performances were fairly commendable, but the narrative is quite simplistic and seems to lack scope compared to its competitors. For what it’s worth, the short was solely character focussed devoid of what could have been an easily politicised piece around heroism, mental health, or the much-dreaded topic of gun reform. But in a way this lack of thematic conviction deterred from the overall impact, presenting a problem without a solution – one regrettably still relevant given the continued frequency of mass shootings and gun violence in the absence of pragmatic regulations in the US, but I digress. Given the subject matter, it’s Oscar nomination comes as no surprise, but given its ethical neutrality, up against the other shorts, it falls flat in execution.
My Nephew Emmett continues the trend of historical adaptions with its highly stylistic and dramatised account of the racially-driven 1955 murder of Emmett Till – an African-American teenage city-boy visiting relatives in Mississippi – for the “crime” of whistling at a white woman. Told from the perspective of Emmett's great-uncle (L.B. Williams), the short is a well-acted highly cinematic piece that unfortunately lacks completeness, perhaps hindered by the ‘short’ aspect of being a short-film. The emotional connection with Emmett just isn’t there, which is a shame given the masterful performance by Williams, whose portrayal is so strikingly dark and emotionally complex it near borders on macabre, complemented by a morbid ambiance of soft and low-light cinematography. An admirable piece built on a shaky foundation, My Nephew Emmett may not win an Oscar, but it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on writer/director Kevin Wilson Jr. – an undergraduate NYU film student would you believe?
Watu Wote/All of Us, the final true-story of the category, tells the story of a Christian woman travelling from Kenya to Somalia on a bus that is stopped by Islamic Al-Shabaab terrorists – a common occurrence near the treacherous border dividing these countries. What makes this tale so indelible is not the attack itself, but the actions of the fellow Muslim passengers, who stand in solidarity and protect the Christians passengers from certain execution. The film casts a group of terrific local Kenyan actors who convey excellent chemistry with one another in a narrative that focusses heavily on the intimacy of negative emotions that fester between the two religious groups, fuelled by the distorted veil of extremist forces. Narratively-speaking, however, the film lacks poignancy, focussing more on dramatizing the 2015 events than making a statement. It’s a story of heroism that eclipses any contention raised on the issues of religious discrimination or fundamentalist terrorism. A heartfelt story for sure, but not one worthy of winning the Oscar.
A nice reprieve from the hard-hitting emotional drain of the other shorts, The Eleven O’Clock is a comically witty film starring Australia’s own Derin Seale and Josh Lawson about a psychiatrist and his titular appointment with a patient suffering from grandiose delusions, thinking he himself is a psychiatrist – the only problem, you don’t know who’s who. What ensues is a hilarious psychoanalytic nightmare that blurs objective reality and confabulated mendacity as both men combat the spiralling hysteria of one another’s “delusions” while attempting to remain professional under duress. Performances are on point, and whilst the twist ending comes as no surprise the journey getting there is satisfyingly maddening. Whether you derive a message pertaining to the perceived instability and delirious nature of the world’s political climate, or perhaps the ubiquity of delusion and egotism of self-avowed expertise, or simply enjoy it at face value for the ludicrous farce it presents, there is much entertainment to be had. Comedic shorts seldomly attain Oscar-winning status and so it’s disheartening to say this homegrown short will likely follow the trend, though regardless I would slate The Eleven O’Clock among the must-watch films emerging from the recent Oscar season.
Lastly, we have The Silent Child, a disheartening PSA-in-disguise about the inherent stigmatism surrounding deaf and hearing-impaired children and the continued lack of specialist support and sign language recognition in schools and greater society. Joanne, a specialist support worker, is hired to assist Libby, a young hearing-impaired girl about to commence her schooling. Though well-intentioned, Libby’s mother is naively adamant in knowing what’s best for her daughter, spurring conflict amongst the family and resistance against Joanne, despite Libby’s promising communication development under her tutelage. In the end, inconvenience outweighs progress, and Libby suffers for it – a heartbreaking end, followed by a coda of frustratingly saddening statistics on the ill-equipped nature of families and schools in assisting the profoundly deaf. Personally, I think The Silent Child is most deserving of the Oscar. The film is gorgeously shot and performances by all are fantastic and emotionally-charged. It’s not a dramatised celebration of heroism or bitter reflection of the past you see in the other ‘true-story’ pieces, but instead is a beautifully crafted call-to-action – a plea for change, a depiction of a tragic reality lived by many. For this it deserves the highest of praise and continued support in the spread of its harrowing message.
Though it is a sombre reality that short-films these days are no longer recognised with the same esteem as their lengthier counterparts, it in no way detracts from the artistry of these succinct cinematic showcases. This year’s Oscar nominees for Best Live-Action Short-Film prove a perfect example to this point and should be experienced by all. Luckily, many cinemas across the country are holding compilation screenings of these shorts back-to-back, and so I would explore everyone to seek out their local screening. You won’t regret it!
THE SQUARE THE MOVIE TO PAY ATTENTION TO website RATE: 10/10
WOW! the film is one spectacular journey into the world of art, relationship, gender and nations interactions , guilt and society / socium fairness.
It describes the contemporary art museum life from the eyes of its director, Christian, divorced with two daughters, struggling to connect with other women, making some awkward decisions in both personal and job-related issues.
He curates the new museum called "The Square" when his marketing campaign fails on all levels attracting media and press to his own values of life and questioning museum's view of the multicultural society.
At the same time Christian gets involved into the rather funny but dramatic at the same time situation over his stolen wallet and mobile phone when he posts some unthoughtful and rather inconsiderate messages to the thieves. It leads him to open up a can of worms on so many level of social life he would not imaged existed.
The crisis in unavoidable and this awful situation can lead him to loose his job and much more.
I adored the camera, the unpredictable moments, the funny parts and the pace - everything everything was beyond my best possible expectations! 10.10 for delivering the messages! Unpronounceably great work of surrealistic art!
FIFTY SHADES FREED NEW website RATE: 5.5/10 review by Yulia Assatryan
Anastasia 'Ana' Steele and Christian Grey return to Seattle after a honeymoon. So we meet our sweet couple again. Will the heroes of modern fairy tale live long and happily? This is already the third movie in this trilogy and we realise that it's not that important for them. The most important to show off the luxurious life from every side. It is a classical erotic romance. Everybody already realised that movie versions of E L James' books are much more successful than the books itself! Sam Taylor-Johnson is a master of adaption. It's worth mentioning that Ana is easily getting along with all the circumstances life offers her. She is a very diligent, intelligent and smart professional young woman. She is a brilliant chief editor, housewife and a beautiful partner for her husband. She is the winner of the film. And everything will be just fine. The viewers have to sit back and enjoy the beautifully made charming naive movie!
THE DEATH OF STALIN website review by Nina Tunaley
THE DEATH OF STALIN - ***
As a fan of satire in the British form I found that I had no choice but to compare this production with the infamous Monty Python and the Goon Shows. This performance is loosely based on the period surrounding those who were in the controlling committee with Stalin at the time of Stalin’s death. Of course, the satirical comedy deals with the power play of committee members with outcomes based on loose historical facts – a bit like the French Asterix series. Overall, I thought it ran a bit long, as the humour becomes a tad too predictable. Just as the Holy Grail stirred a lot of criticism I feel that to those knowing or living close to this period of history, could be offended, as satire does not suit all. It does manage to touch on all the “known bad aspects” of the Stalin period, and make light of the individual situations surrounding each of the committee of politians. The casting was typical Monty Python with actors who did not hold back in their portrayal of each character – ruthless.
There have been many brilliant horror movies in recent years, from IT to Get out and even Lights out made an acceptable showing; the Spierig brothers new film Winchester, will not be counted among them. A dry and dull affair, with all the tension of a wet noodle and the emotional impact of kindergarten musical. Relying entirely on outdated and overused film technics, hoping to catch viewers off guard as they slip in out of consciousness trying make it through its bloated and utterly predictable script. Winchester is a paint by numbers film emphasises all the wrong aspects and contains such little respect for its viewers it seems to actively go out of its way to insult them every step of the way. The film claims to be “Based on true events” in much the same way that the vomit I had to swallow watching this film was based on the meal I once ate. It tells the story of a rich widower and heir to the Winchester gun company as she attempts to battle the spirits of all those killed by her company’s guns through the use of nonsensical architecture and a belief in the divinity of the number 13. Told through the eyes of a painfully foreshadowed phycologist as he attempts to diagnose the aging widow and keep his mind intact through this unrelenting beat down of a film. The films main stars Helen Mirren and Jason Clarke are both so obviously waiting for their pay check it’s astounding that they weren’t caught on camera checking their bank accounts. Both actors have proven themselves to be talented and capable of greatness, which just makes watching them phone it in with such apathetic performances you almost feel bad for them having to waste their time so very uncomfortable. The supporting cast range from forgettably mediocre to downright cringeworthy. Mirren and Clarke combined may be enough to carry this film, but it’s a heavy burden and without motivation, they don’t carry it far. They aren’t helped by the simplistic script and cookie cutter plot of course. With characters being forced to repeat and explain every single detail of the plot to such a minute scale that even the most unobservant viewers feel bludgeoned by the film and it’s clearly non existent expectations of its audience. Not that the plot is complicated, philosophical or otherwise difficult to completely understand. The film seems to have a secret agenda, aiming to hit as many horror clichés as possible without being noticed and fails terribly. It comes down to writer laziness more than anything, and no where is this more apparent than in its supposed “horror” elements. Relying exclusively on jump scares the film is about as nail biting as a double amputee. For all the dark pallet choices, dramatic camera angles and laughable attempts at foreshadowing, the film contains absolutely no tension whatsoever. The film is so predictable that a mere five minutes in, the audience had already begun audibly counting down the seconds until the next jump scare arrived. It’s attempts at phycological drama are half assed and lead nowhere, much like the dramatic family angle that was almost built into a solid arc only to completely neglect the payoff at the finally. It’s attempts at romance were so unreservedly noxious that it raises the question of whether the directors understand basic human emotions. A question made further prominent when you consider that aside from writing and directing this abomination they were also responsible for the music. A monotonous, mind-numbingly soporific mummer that pervades the film. While not as terrible as the other aspects of the movie, the constant hum of tortured violins and protracted pianos wears thin very early on and works to further distance the audience from the atmosphere that the film makers seem so desperate to create. If the film does have a saving grace however it is Ben Nott and his cinematography work. While this film may be doomed to the dumpster fires of history, it will be in no way because of how it looked. The lighting is appropriate to the scenes, the colour pallets are fitting and effective, and camera does the very best it can to portray the emotions and drama that the rest of the film lacks the power to present. Winchester is doomed to become a black spot on the resumes of nearly everyone responsible for this films creation, however anyone who has the misfortune to watch this feature will agree that Mr Nott deserves to hold his head high. In summary, Winchester is a beautiful train wreck, a ten-a-penny mediocre mess of writing that somehow obtained enough of a budget to lure in a couple of decent actors and a good cinematographer. Is it scary? Most certainly not. Is it enjoyable? Only if you really like seeing handlebar moustaches. Is it worth paying the price of admission? If I still have to answer that question, then who knows, for you, maybe.
FACES PLACES BEST MOVIE OF THE MONTH website RATE: 10/10
It took me a while to put together what wanted to write about this film. I got very emotional watching it as it reminded me my own personal journey in art. It is sentimental, it is poetic, it is documentary, and it is great French director Agnes Varda and street photographer, graffiti artist, JR travel in France and set up new highly inventive and artistic projects with locals. The film shows a beautiful country side of France which reminded me of Russia and our own country house. I was all in tears of course... An art collaborating couple cruise around in a van, chat and capture unusual set ups with goats farmers and local food producers. Both artists are geniuses. Their creative side is so inspiring you will want to do the same if you feel the film's idea. They are remarkable and the picture is hard yo describe to be honest unless you watch it - it is more like many Fellini movies - it is about everything and nothing. It is a story of life, a part of life and a beautiful par tit is. This is what I call classic (in my understanding of the genre of course) Watch the film just with one purpose please: travel with the artists inside their world. You will feel connected right through your heart. The friendship between two is amazing to watch as well. this IS FRIENDSHIP without naming it. They do not have rules in their friendship. "I have a nice relationship with time, because the past is here, you know? I've spent time, if I have something of my past, I'll just make it, nowadays, I make it now and here." The scene of a person coming to someone else's place with a gift (favorite food) and the person not opening up is hurtful and is shown very deeply in the film through the tears of Agnes whose friend did not let her in despite the arrangement. Just keep in mind one thing when you watch: EYE CAN NOT LIE! - make it as your punch line...
"I know that the seaside represents the whole world", she remarked, "the sky, the ocean, and the earth, the sand. And it's like expressing where is the world. It's about a calm sea, a calm ocean, just a very, very discreet wave ending on the sand. And that's a landscape that touches me a lot. But I know that also people feel that, too."
SEE YOU UP THERE (Au revoir là-haut) THE MOVIE TO PAY ATTENTION TO ALLIANCE FRANCAISE FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL 2018 website RATE: 9/10 review by Yulia Assastryan
The main heroes , Albert and Edward, a famous designer and the modest bookkeeper surviving the hardships of the First world war decided to organise an enormous fraud with monuments to victims who died on fields of battles. This shady deal becomes not only dramatic, but also very dangerous … The novel refers to « See you up there!>>Pierre Lemaitre. « Au revoir là- haut>> are the last words of the soldier shot for some crime at war. Author speaks about things universal: about nonsense of war, life and death. The stupidity of the propaganda screaming about the heroes battling and dying for fatherland is obvious. But in general « See you up there, at the top of » is not a philosophical but adventurous movie. In this film bloody events of the First world war are described extremely realistically. Terrible battles which have carried away lives of thousand soldiers are shown as complete general madness. A small group of soldiers under the command of captain Anri. got lost. This person is ready for everything, for the sake of the financial benefit. However two guys managed to survive in that meat grinder.. Bookkeeper Albert Long could not believe to the luck of his survival. Together with another survivor Edward they decided to establish their own business. This desperate couple decided to earn on the memories of the lost comrades. They have developed the nasty business. Nobody could catch villains in a lie. But once circumstances have developed against them. Now they are threatened with danger of death. Can they escape this one more time? It is a bright ,very realistic (sometimes too much realistic), dynamic screen version of the novel THE GREAT SWINDLE (Au revoir là-haut in French) by Pierre Lemetre.
It’s a universal truth that we all have regrets and lost dreams, for some of us, those dreams can be rekindled if only we hold out hope, for others, only pain rewards our optimism. For lovers of Stephen Sondheim’s 1971 musical Follies, hope has proven to worth the risk. 30 years since its last full scale performance, National Theatre has rekindled the flame and brought those beautiful girls back to the stage, regrets and all.
For the unaffiliated, Follies tells the story of two couples, each as loveless and apathetic to each other as they are remorseful of their life choices and nostalgic for the romance of their past. Ben and Phyliss Stone represent the lustrous nouveau riche; based in Manhattan the well to do couple live comfortably but menially, bored, childless and deeply unhappy. Contrasting them are Buddy and Sally Plummer, equally wealthy and borderline depressed but much lower key, having chosen to the move to phoenix and live a quiet life. The play follows Sally primarily, and tell the story of her shifting mindset. From her long standing, resigned crush on Ben, to her increasingly hopeful passion of rekindling the flame, all the way back to a furious final acceptance that come across with such passion that it borders on the insane.
The setting for the couples’ drama is also significant, the story taking place in 1971 on the eve of a theatres destruction. The cast all represent the retired theatre performers, returning and reuniting for one last hurrah. A huge foreshadow of the nostalgia-based mindset shared by nearly all the characters. Now in their twilight years, the characters seem to have universally agreed upon a romanticised and exaggerated version of the past. A vison of which constantly haunts the play, drifting in and out of the performance to remind the audience of just how ridiculous and glamorous their memories truly are.
Follies truly is an unusual play, for all it’s grand spectacle, huge musical numbers, ridiculous over the top dance routines, massive set pieces and general extravagance, it is at its heart, a character study. Delving deeply into the lives, minds, thoughts and feelings of the four main characters. It’s not the peacock feathers that carry the story, it’s the moments of introspection and true communication between the lovers, ex-lovers and hanger-on’s. It’s about letting the past be what it was without trying to blow it up into something it could never have been and about accepting your choices in life without driving yourself insane with questions of what could/might have been. This point in particular in driven home with spectacular style and grace, as the play combines the two stories lines seamlessly, cutting from what was, to what is and blending the two, at times, portraying both simultaneously yet keeping the story coherent and without losing the audience. A feat made even more impressive by the shows unbroken two and a quarter hour run time. Not that it feels long, just the opposite in fact. With a collection of frabjous songs, magnificent dances and stunning performances, all telling an earnest and eternally relevant message of life and memory, Follies is a phenomenal exhibition of talent and showmanship. With a strong lesson for youth, told through the mouths of the experienced, Follies is worth a watch regardless of age, gender or background. To let this opportunity go past, would truly be the height of folly.
LADY BIRD THE MOVIE TO PAY ATTENTION TO website review by Max Lynns
Briefly touted as “The best reviewed movie of all time” (holding a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes for several months post-release), Lady Bird is a fascinating character study of a young woman trying to find her identity amidst the fray of an effervescent adolescence. In her first solo writer/director role, Greta Gerwig creates a beautifully heartfelt coming-of-age tale that through its ups and downs feels all too real in its portrayal of the chaotic existential paradox that is maturity. With stellar performances and hilarious one-liners throughout, it’s no wonder the movie has received such high praise.
Set in Sacramento, Lady Bird revolves around high-school senior Christine McPherson (Saoirse Ronan), self-nicknamed “Lady Bird” – literally, she gave the name to herself. Burdened by the manacles of her vapid environment, she yearns for the flourish of a better life on the East Coast, attending a college somewhere like New York (or Connecticut or New Hampshire) where the artistically excitable thrive. Nevermind the lower class financial struggles of her family, nor her mediocre grades, in this true to life portrayal of the adolescent mind reality takes a backseat to solipsism.
Even within the apparent mediocrity and melancholy of her environs, she seeks the milieu of the affluent and popular. Naïve and callow, Lady Bird makes the timeless mistake of undervaluing what she has in blind pursuit of a disparate life, whether it be trading genuine friendship for superficial admiration and prestige or seeking love and intimacy at the cost of her innocence. But it comes from a place of good (if only misguided) intent. Beneath the façade of youthful independence is a kind-hearted girl who merely wants to break free of the constraints of her adolescence. And therein lies the true beauty of Ronan’s performance. It felt all too real. Through all the highs and lows of the story she evoked such emotion in her portrayal that it truly felt reminiscent of what life was like transitioning from a teenager to a young adult.
In similar fashion, Laurie Metcalfe’s performance as Lady Bird’s mother (Marion) was nothing short of spectacular. Fuelling most of the emotional drive of the narrative, Marion is the glue holding the family together. Whilst Lady Bird’s father Larry (Tracy Letts) is the ‘softy’ of the family, her mother is forced to play ‘bad cop’. In true mother-daughter fashion, the interactions between Marion and Lady Bird are riddled with conflict and contempt on both sides as she tries desperately to “tough love” her daughter into some semblance of maturity. However, Marion’s pragmatic nature and candid expression often come across as disdain to the emotionally immature Lady Bird, further adding fuel to the fire. The interplay between these two characters is complex and alluring and serves as the crux of Lady Bird’s coming-of-age.
At a runtime of only 94-minutes the theatrics of Lady Bird’s senior year (and briefly beyond) fly by in a myriad of montages, jump-cuts, and short-lived scenes that, whilst succinct, cut straight to the point and didn’t needlessly waffle on for the sake of exposition or a padded runtime. Moreover, the frequency of these epigrammatic-style quick-cuts meant that when a lengthier, more narrative-crucial scene followed it seemed more purposeful and had a pronounced impact in contrast, helping to subtly drive-home the importance of the scene’s focus. As a trade-off, however, having such swift transitions hindered the cohesiveness of the overall narrative. The movie came across more as a series of tangential vignettes rather than a fluid progression of story arcs. Each event served a purpose in Lady Bird’s maturation in some small way, but ultimately lacked an emotive connection to the overarching story. Perhaps the addition of a few more mother-daughter/father dialogues connecting the loose threads of Lady Bird’s experiences might have served the film well.
All in all, Lady Bird was one of those rare films that was simply a pleasure to watch. It brings with it that bittersweet feeling of relatability in watching someone grow as a person and learn from their mistakes and past pitfalls. Lady Bird is everything that life and maturity are – it’s messy, unpredictable, funny, emotional, and everything in between. It may not be one of those classics you watch time and time again, but it would be amiss to say it wasn’t worth seeing at least once.
Lady Bird will be released in cinemas Australia-wide on February 15, 2018.
CALL ME BY YOUR NAME BEST MOVIE OF THE MONTH website RATE: 10/10 review by Yulia Assatryan
The screen version of the novel of André Aciman about intimacy between the young scientist Oliver and а teenager Elio Perlman who spends summer in the Italian mansion of his parents. Helping with scientific documentation to his very respectful professor Perlaman, the beautiful and thoughtless probationer wins heart of his unsophisticated son. My general impression is as following: I want just talk about advantages of this film.: Music is absolutely stunning and catchy is impossible attractive in this movie! the vewier is carried away by the magis sounds just to that small Italy where there was a 17-year-old hero Elio.Drunk with feelings we keep enjoying italan rural medieval arcitecture, food wine, language,parlare-mangiare,alora....The landscape scnes are goregeous, fruit-vegetables, fish.....Hillarious! Very solar movie from Italian Luca Guadagnino famous for the colourful melodramas. In his pictures there is a lot of sensuality, an esthetics, sex and the most true beauty with which heart fades, and the plot departs on the twenty third plan. This time the Italian director has decided to picturize a besteller of the compatriot André Aciman about fantastic summer to the Mediterranean which the young intellectual Elio has carried out with the assistant to the father - American Oliver … The fabulousness of history consists in the idea that they find each other and nobody disturbs them. Their lyrical novel damages nobody unlike the classical love stories.But this love has neither enemy, nor contradictions — that happy occurence when all perfectly understand everything.Everybody accept, forgive and support.
I, TONYA website RATE: 8/10 review by Yulia Assaryan
Professional sport is full of pain and failures - all of which are illustrated in "I, Tonya". Tonya Harding is one of the most well known figure skaters, carving herself a successful career spanning a decade and becoming a household name. There are a lot of victories and the most prestigious awards in her portfolio but she was remembered from a negative side. At the USA figure skating championship in 1994 the ex-husband of Tonya Jeff Gillooly and the bodyguard Shawn Eckhardt have provoked somebody to break the right leg of her closest competitor Nancy Kerrigan.He has only hurt Nancy's leg but this trauma stopped her from further competition. Craig Gillespie created a vigorous, perfectly made movie which traces the stages of Tonya's life very realistically. Tonya was born in a poor working family, so called white trash. Extremely talented she was chronically not lucky. Mentally injured by the spiteful mother Tonya was regularly taught hatred lessons to the whole world. Mother beat poor Tonya and once has even thrown a knife at her .After that Tonya ran away from home and has married the guy who … beat her too and once has even shot at her (from great love). Far from stereotypes of "the real sportswoman", Tonya drank, smoked, guzzled pizza and in general didn't refuse anything as the normal girl - however kept training and even competed at the Olympic Games . But the arbitrators decided that Tonya wasn't "a positive image of the American girl''. Everything that was really wanted by Tonya was a little love from mother, the husband and the audience. Tonya Harding is one of the most famous figure skaters, the first American and the second woman in the history who has managed to perform a threefold axel at competitions. However she has become famous not for sporting achievements, but attack on the competitor which was organized by her husband. All history of Tonya Harding – difficult, ambiguous and dramatic is about tension and discrimination peculiar to big-time sports, and how the outstanding career can be destroyed because of some minor idiots. All facts are witty collected in a uniform picture that the viewer has already solved independently without pressure of an author's position Our australian movie star Margo Robbie has proved to be really talented actress capable of serious drama experiences. Even the audience well familiar with history of figure skating will support Tonya before each her exit to ice. Allison Janney – mother of the main character- has turned out so charismatic and deserves "Golden Globe" definitely.
MENASHE website RATE: 8/10 review by Carolyn Newall
Menashe - Rialto Distribution Review Director Joshua Z. Weinstein has combined his documentary experience with a literary approach made famous by Jane Austen, to shape his beautiful, sensitive film, Menashe. Unless you had done some research you would not be aware that the film is based on a true story, Far less that the story is that of the man playing the lead character, Manashe Lustig, an Hasidic Jew from the New York Hasidic community in Borough Park, Brooklyn. In Austen style, Weinstein paints a detailed miniature, focussing so closely on this small neighbourhood and the minutia of daily life that you are not often reminded that this is actually New York. Authentically, for the place, the dialogue is in Yiddish. My first exposure to Hasidic Judaism came when I was studying and teaching Chaim Potok’s wonderful novel My Name is Asher Lev. Published in 1972, Potok explores the clash between ultra conservative religion and artistic giftedness. Asher Lev’s father, in Christian terms, was an evangelist and missionary who was devout, devoted and disciplined. At that time the depiction of the human form in art was still forbidden by religious law so coming to terms with his only son as a gifted artist was difficult. Potok could have used his story as a condemnation of the rigidity of Hasidic law but he didn’t. It is much more layered than that as the author endeavours to find his place in a tradition that he has no desire to leave. Given my previous understanding I was surprised to learn that Weinstein found any members of the community to appear in the film let alone be able to cast the entire project with non-actor members of the community and shot the entire film in the neighbourhood. The purchase of a portrait to decorate the apartment also seemed odd to me. I shouldn’t have been surprised though as change happens everywhere, even if incrementally. Many of the cast had never even seen a movie, far less been in one. It wasn’t easy, many participants pulled out for fear of repercussions and the full cast list was kept confidential for the duration of the filming. Menashe is a little like Potok, he may be rebelling in small things like his clothing and his desire to raise his son, Rieven, (played by Ruben Niborski ) on his own, but at heart he is devout and has no desire to leave the community that he identifies so closely with. His existential struggle is a recurring one; how do you jettison nonsensical tradition while keeping to the parts that give meaning. For Menashe, it seems ridiculous that his son must live with his brother’s family unless he marries again. It is forbidden for children to be raised by single parents. Yet if he does remarry it is forbidden for his new wife to touch her stepson. So what is the point? As it turns out Menashe has good reason not to want to marry again.
However, in his bumbling, endearing way Menashe asks for the opportunity to prove that he is capable of raising his son. Whether it was his unfortunate burning of the kugel or the Ruv’s gracious response to the burning, we see at the end that Menashe has accepted the inevitable. Nothing is said but we do see him, resplendent in the dreaded hat and coat, presumably on his way to see the matchmaker. That however is presumption as the ending is ambiguous. It is clear why this film created such a stir at Sundance. It is sensitive, nuanced and compelling. The first-time actors present unwaveringly authentic characters and the glimpse into this intensely private and closed community are fascinating. The universality of its themes: family, community and belonging make it appealing and pertinent to those of us on the outside as well. 8/10 Carolyn Newall
MOLLY'S GAME THE MOVIE TO PAY ATTENTION TO website review by Nina Tunaley
I found this movie attention grabbing, due to the amount of information one is continually receiving in relation to the personal story of Molly, American gambling laws and the confronting issues associated with all the types of mostly wealthy card players involved at Molly's game table. Another level of interest is added towards the end with the push of local crime syndicates. Molly was a good athelete in younger years but an accident had her looking for a career in other places. By chance, she linked up with a proponent of the game table, and eventually collects enough information to run her own. The producer spends time during this period to ensure you understand how women were treated at this time, and this leads Molly to take hold of her destiny, which she does successfully while walking a very tight legal line. In the background running parrallel to Molly's life, her two brothers are competing at high level, fully pushed by their father. Molly's relationship with father is examined and conciled at the end of the story when she re-enters the sporting arena having fought court battles with the tax and crime offices of America. You really must keep up with the jargon of each character type, plus pay full attention to the constant narration in this production. A lot of information to asorb in quite a long film but it remains interesting to the end. Really interesting story of Molly Bloom, a beautiful, young, Olympic-class skier who ran the world's most exclusive high-stakes poker , very well produced, stars from Leonardo DiCaprio to Ben Affleck. Worth seeing.
THE POST website RATE: 7/10 review by Yulua Assatryan
Improbable history of Catherine Graham, first female publisher of the Washington Post newspaper, and editor Ben Bradley. They enter a race with New York Times for the right to shed light on state the secrets disappearing more than 30 years. Journalists should overcome the disagreements and to risk career and freedom that the world has learned the truth. Events of this film of the director Steven Spielberg are developed around serious scandal which center have handed over dear newspapers New York Times and Washington Post. When having received on hands the materials baring all that lie which was hidden by the U.S. Government behind numerous secrets more than 30 years both news editions have risked all for the sake of the most important in the profession — fight for the truth and justice. In this case, concentrating attention around Catherine Graham and Ben Bradley who began the main symbols of that fight which took place to be in real life. Steven Spielberg shows skill with impressive tranquility. He twists a thriller spiral by means of dialogues, he with it is helped by the star performers showing tension powerful internally literally several gestures. "the favourite of America" Tom Hanks and the invariable nominee of each Oscar Meryl Streep became the main "deadly weapon" of a picture certainly. Both actors have perfectly played roles, but their role doesn't want to call the best in career of each of actors and even noticeable at all. Watching this movie is a must
BREATHE website RATE: 7.5/10 review by Yulia Assartryan
After the wedding the young British Robin (Andrew Garfield) and Diana Cavendish (Claire Foy) are full of plans for the future. However shortly after Diana becomes pregnant, Robin gets sick with poliomyelitis, and the virus almost completely paralises the man. Now Robin can't even breathe. He has to be constantly connected to the medical ventilator. Doctors assure Diana that the disease is incurable and that Robin has to spend the last days in hospital. When the husband's condition is stabilized, Diana tries to obtain that Robin is transported home . Inspired with love of the wife, Robin constructs the wheelchair with the built-in system of artificial respiration. It allows him to find mobility of which patients with his diagnosis didn't even dare to dream before. New British biopic "Breathe " is produced by Jonathan Cavendish – Robin and Diana's son, the main characters of the film. Cavendish directs special effective studio The Imaginarium, and it has allowed him to employ the screenwriter William Nicholson and to charge direction of a picture to the business partner Andy Serkis). "Breathe " became Serkis' debut. The image presented by Cavendish is inspiring and pleasant, but also flat and dullish. Heroes are so strong spiritually that they with ease step over any obstacle, mental or medical .We see how Diana discharges Robin from hospital and he starts moving around the house. In a certain period of time they travel the world to stand for the rights of disabled people to live out of hospital chamber … All this is curious, but not very touchy . A particular interest ican arise among patients who need artificial respiration. Fortunately, the film has a powerful weapon – charm of the leading actors and minor characters (relatives and friends). Formally the picture is considered to be medical drama. But it looks almost like the comedy about smiling and eccentric people who support each other at a difficult moment and good-natured joke even in the face of death.